Survey highlights test challenges facing engineers

Posted By : Mick Elliott

A report just issued by Keysight reveals the increasing challenges to achieving electronic hardware manufacturing quality and the impact of poor testing practices on the bottom line of businesses. The Keysight Test Equipment Report is based on a survey conducted by Dimensional Research consisting of 306 participants that use test equipment for ensuring electronic device quality and testing.

The survey sought to understand the current challenges for achieving electronic hardware manufacturing quality.

According to the survey, 64% of respondents confirmed that ensuring product quality is growing more difficult due to the increased complexity of electronics, and the corresponding complexities of testing required to measure quality.

Respondents reported that quality challenges originate from growing customer demands and tighter tolerances to increasing manufacturing complexity and pace.

While extreme product quality issues can make headlines, 92% of survey respondents said that they suffer significant business impact from error-prone test equipment. Survey respondents report that quality issues frequently impact the bottom line, citing increased costs to repair or dispose of defective products and lost business, potential lawsuits and regulatory penalties, as well as lost time-to-market or market advantages, damaged customer relationships and a tarnished brand.

Looking further into quality issues, survey respondents reported that testing equipment that is out of calibration has caused product rejection, recalls, loss and returns.

Further, 49% of companies surveyed said that they lose $100,000 or more for every 1% of yield lost.

“The survey demonstrates that electronic hardware manufacturers are faced with numerous challenges to ensure quality and that achieving that quality is difficult due to the complexities of today’s electronic products,” said John Page, president, Keysight Global Services. “Respondents report that product quality issues can directly impact the bottom line by increasing costs, stalling market momentum and disappointing customers.”

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